Performances in the classroom are netting the highest rated results at Colorado since the Academic Progress Report began seven years ago.

As a result, the Buffs will be removed from "penalty status" in football and men's basketball, according to results released on Tuesday.

The improved classroom performance comes a year after CU lost five scholarships in football and another in men's hoops for falling short in the annual APR.

The APR measures classroom performance of student-athletes on every Division I squad. Teams that score below the 925 cutline may face penalties. This year's data covers 2006-07 through 2009-10.

Colorado's football team increased its most recent APR score to 958, moving its four-year total from 920 to 929. The squad also implemented an academic improvement plan, which started under Dan Hawkins and will be carried out by new coach Jon Embree.

The basketball squad had a perfect score of 1,000.

Also at CU, the men's golf and women's tennis programs earned NCAA Public Recognition Awards, given to teams scoring in the top 10 percent in their most recent APR results. Both CU sports earned a perfect 1,000 four-year score.

The academic boost comes on the heels of the Buffs heading into the Pac-12 next season.

"I am gratified by the very positive trends for CU intercollegiate athletics demonstrated in this year's APR ratings," CU Chancellor Philip P. DiStefano said in a news release.


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"They are a testament to the commitment to academic achievement demonstrated by our players, coaches, faculty and administrators, and serve as proof positive that we are ready to enter with confidence the most academically challenging major athletic conference in the nation: the Pac-12."

The football program's APR score of 958 in the 2009-10 report improved its four-year score from 920 to 929. Penalties can be imposed when the four-year score drops below 925.

The Buffs last year were forced to cut five scholarships for one year for failing to get their score above 925.

The men's basketball team notched its first perfect 1,000 score. After scoring below 900 for three years, this year's improvement moved its four-year score to 926.

The men's basketball program was penalized after the 2008-09 report, which resulted in a one-year reduction in scholarships from 13 to 12 (taken in 2008-09).

For the seventh consecutive year all of CU's other 14 programs remained in good standing and are not subject to any penalties.

Of those 14, 12 showed improvement in the four-year APR rate, all with scores of 950 or above. The two that did not improve, women's basketball and women's golf, had perfect 1,000 annual scores a year ago but still posted scores of 965 and 964, respectively.

In addition to men's basketball, women's tennis and men's golf, three other CU programs earned a perfect 1,000 score for the 2009-10 annual report. Women's tennis earned the perfect score for the fourth straight year and men's golf for a second; they were joined by men's cross country, women's cross country and women's volleyball.

That brings the total to 28 times that CU programs earned a perfect score since the APR came into being.

All one-year scores for all 16 of Colorado's programs were 958 or above, with volleyball showing the largest increase, jumping 68 points from 932 to 1000, followed by men's cross country (49 points, 951 to 1000), men's basketball (45 points, 955 to 1000), women's skiing (43 points, 932 to 975), women's cross country (42 points, 957 to 1000) and men's skiing (41 points, 938 to 979).

Nationally, 103 programs at 67 schools were sanctioned for poor academic performance, down from 137 and 80, respectively, last year.